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Two tennis greats broke records at the 2022 Australian Open over the weekend. Ashleigh “Ash” Barty and Rafael “Rafa” Nadal swung their rackets and made history.
Barty became the first Aussie woman to make it to the singles final since 1980, Wendy Turnbull. After winning, she became the first Aussie woman singles champion in 44 years; Chris O’Neil in 1978. The 25-year-old professional tennis player and former cricketer declared this was a dream come true for her. “I’m just so proud to be an Aussie,” she enthusiastically added.
The women’s singles champion is ranked No. 1 globally by the Women’s Tennis Association and is the No. 2 in Australian WTA singles. Barty now holds grand slams on three surfaces, the hard court at Melbourne Park, the grass at Wimbledon in July 2021, and the clay court at the French Open in June 2019.
Nadal captured his 21st Grand Slam title setting the men’s singles record for most wins in history at the Australian Open; his first was in 2009. “Tonight has been unforgettable. I feel very lucky,” he exclaimed. The Spaniard surpasses Roger Federer, the Swiss tennis professional with 20, and Serbian Novak Djokovic, who also has 20 wins under his belt.
The 35-year-old Spanish professional is ranked No. 5 globally by the Association of Tennis Professionals. Nadel secured his newest title after winning a 5-hour and 24-minute match against Daniil Medvedev at the Australian Open, becoming one of the longest Grand Slam finals ever played. He also became the fourth man to win all of tennis’ four major titles at least twice, joining Roy Emerson, Rod Laver, and Djokovic.
Nadal is the fifth most successful player at the Australian Open with two titles among his numerous accolades.
Written by Cathy Milne-Ware
USA Today: World No. 1 Ash Barty becomes first Aussie woman to win Australian Open singles title in 44 years
AO: Brilliant Barty breaks local drought with title; Ravi Ubha
CBS News: Rafael Nadal wins Australian Open, capturing record 21st Grand Slam title
First Sportz: List of records broken by Rafael Nadal after winning the 2022 Australian Open; by Sarthak Shitole
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